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Profile Pieces : Journalism and the 'Human Interest' Bias (Hardcover)
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This book examines the history, theory and journalistic practice of profile writing. Profiles, and the practice of writing them, are of increasing interest to scholars of journalism because conflicts between the interviewer and the subject exemplify the changing nature of journalism itself. While the subject, often through the medium of their press representative, struggles to retain control of the interview space, the journalist seeks to subvert it. This interesting and multi-layered interaction, however, has rarely been subject to critical scrutiny, partly because profiles have traditionally been regarded as public relations exercises or as ‘soft’ journalism. However, chapters in this volume reveal not only that profiling has, historically, taken many different forms, but that the idea of the interview as a contested space has applications beyond the subject of celebrated individuals. The volume looks at the profile’s historical beginnings, at the contemporary manufacture of celebrity versus the ‘ordinary’, at profiling communities, countries and movements, at profiling the destitute, at sporting personalities and finally at profiling and trauma.